Wind energyprojects gaining momentum
By Elias Gebreselassie
in Capital, Wednesday, 14 September 2011, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
15 wind tower generators with a capacity to generate 15 Mega watts of electricity, part of the 51 Mega Watts Adama I wind farm project are set to be installed starting from October 15, 2011 with an initial power generation expected to start in December 2011.
Gossaye Mengiste director of energy studies and development follow up at the Ministry of Water and Energy (MoWE) stated: ‘The wind power project is cheaper in economies of scale and takes little space to install compared to the generators that the country uses in times of power shortages. We are expecting to install 34 wind town generators with a total height of 100 metres per single wind tower generator each having a generating capacity of 1.5MW.’ The project started on July 14, 2011, although preparatory works such as land acquisition were settled earlier. It is located 95 kms south east of Addis Ababa and is expected to be finished by June 12, 2012.
The wind tower generators will be connected to a 132 Kilo Volt (KV) transmission line which will connect the generators to the national power grid of Ethiopia.
Gossaye said the place is suitable for wind power because of its high terrain, and little or no forest cover. He also stated that the Adama wind farm project II of 51 Mega Watt feasibility study has been finished and that this second project is slated to be started by the end of the year. The aims of these projects are to create a climate resilient economy by 2025.
He further said that the project is being undertaken by the Chinese companies CGCOC joint venture and Hydro China and consulted by the Addis Ababa University Technology faculty. It is to be financed through a 157 million dollars loan received from the Export-import bank of China (EXIM).
These projects are part of the Ethiopian government’s plan to generate 800 Mega Watts of wind energy by 2014/15 fiscal year. Other projects, the government of Ethiopia has planned in the GTP (Growth and Transformation Plan) are the 120 Mega Watt Ashegoda wind farm project, the 300 Mega Watt Ayesha wind farm project, Debre Berhan and Assela Wind farms set to produce 100 Mega Watts each and the Messebo/Harena wind farm project with a capacity to generate 51 Mega Watts.
Wind power projects are part of the Ethiopian government’s plan to increase electricity generation from Hydro electric, Geo-Thermal, wind and from sugar factories from the current 2,000 Mega Watts to 10,000 Mega Watts by the end of the Growth and Transformation Plan period.